Leaving Panamanian waters it was apparent this was the beginning of a step change where wildlife was now in charge. We sailed through dolphins, rays, sharks and then a mid ocean meeting of enormous numbers of pelicans floating on the surface and spontaneously dive bombing for fish.
Our tranquil route took us across the equator and transformation from 'Pollywog' to 'Shellback' honouring Neptune in a line-crossing ceremony at 10.30pm. Naturally the costume theme was Bunnies?!?!?! Hugh (Hefner) conducted proceedings with an original ode. Embarrassing photo includes new crew member Mike, on board for the leg to French Polynesia .
Arrival in Galapagos was to the easternmost island San Cristobal and Charles Darwin's first stop in 1835. Wildlife in Galapagos is oblivious to humans affording you with the most wonderful and entrancing closeups. Sea lions own the port lying on the pier, benches, sun beds and our boat decks if we forgot to tie the fenders across the transom. On a hike to a volcanic lava field the black iguanas basked in the sun blocking the path. Natural Selection became clearer on subsequent islands as the iguanas were either green and red, scrawny and sand coloured or portly and sand coloured depending on the land colour and quality of vegetation. Marine iguanas can stay under water for an hour in order to cool down. Land iguanas were climbing trees!
Then came the glorious birds. Our travels through the islands found us one metre away from serene Wave Albatross, male Frigate birds plumping their enormous red breasts and flapping their wings to attract a mate and the stylishly coloured Blue Footed Boobies hatching their eggs. And of course, you can't say Galapagos without thinking tortoise and they were majestic and humongous yet as if from a pre-historic time.
The Americans have the only word to describe The Galapagos...awesome! Next adventure a 20+ day passage to The Marquesas!
The Meteorite Crew
Debbie, Hugh, Janice and Andy